The charging of the dielectric used for the actuation in microelectromechanical system (MEMS) devices is one of the major failure sources for switches based on this technology. For this reason, a better understanding of such an effect is vital to improve the reliability for both ground and space applications. In this paper, the expected response of MEMS switches to unipolar and bipolar dc actuation voltages has been measured and modeled. Two configurations of MEMS switches, namely, an Ohmic series and a shunt capacitive one designed for microwave applications, have been studied as a test vehicle for charging effects related to the dc actuation pads. The recorded data have been interpreted mainly through the Poole–Frenkel effect due to charge injection when a high voltage is applied to the dielectric layer. Metal-Insulator-Metal (MIM) structures have been also considered as a complementary information for the response of the dielectric material.

1.
J.
Hopkinson
and
E.
Wilson
,
Philos. Trans. R. Soc. London
189
,
109
(
1897
).
2.
G.
Binet
,
M.
Freire
,
M.
Van Eesbeek
,
E.
Daly
,
G.
Drolshagen
,
T.
Henriksen
,
A.
Thirkettle
,
P.
Poinas
,
M.
Eiden
, and
M.
Guglielmi
, ESA-ESTEC Technical Note No. EUI-AHS/5297/MF/GB/ap (
2006
).
3.
T.
Asokan
,
Curr. Sci.
79
,
348
(
2000
).
4.
C. T.-C.
Nguyen
,
L. P. B.
Katehi
, and
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
Proc. IEEE
86
,
1756
(
1998
).
5.
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
RF MEMS Theory, Design, and Technology
(
Wiley
,
Hoboken
,
2003
).
6.
J.
Joung
,
J.
Shen
, and
P.
Grodzinski
,
IEEE Trans. Magn.
36
,
2012
(
2000
).
7.
D.
Yan
, “
Mechanical design and modeling of MEMS thermal actuators for rf applications
,” M.S. thesis,
University of Waterloo
, Ontario, Master of Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering,
2002
.
8.
H. -C.
Lee
,
J. -Y.
Parkand
, and
J. -Uk
Bu
,
IEEE Microw. Wirel. Compon. Lett.
15
,
202
(
2005
).
9.
H.
De Los Santos
,
G.
Fischer
,
H. A. C.
Tilmans
, and
J. T. M.
Van Beek
,
IEEE Microw. Mag.
5
,
36
(
2004
).
10.
ESA/ESTEC Project No. 14628/NL/CK-MEM Switch on Microwave electrostatic micro-machined devices for on-board applications.
11.
ESA-ESTEC Project Medina No. 14627/00/NL/WK.
12.
L.
Dussopt
and
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
51
,
1247
(
2003
).
13.
D.
Girbau
,
N.
Otegi
, and
L.
Pradell
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
,
54
,
1120
(
2006
).
14.
D.
Mercier
,
P.
Blondy
,
D.
Barataud
,
D.
Cros
,
P.
Guillon
,
C.
Champeaux
,
P.
Tristant
, and
A.
Catherinot
,
Proceedings of the 32nd European Microwave Conference
,
2002
(unpublished).
15.
D.
Peroulis
,
S. P.
Pacheco
, and
L. P. B.
Katehi
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
52
,
59
(
2004
).
16.
TERAVICTA data sheet on SP4T 7 GHz RF MEMS switch, http://www.teravicta.com/site/images/pdf/TT1414/DS-TT1414_1.3.pdf (
2007
).
17.
S.
Di Nardo
,
P.
Farinelli
,
F.
Giacomozzi
,
G.
Mannocchi
,
R.
Marcelli
,
B.
Margesin
,
P.
Mezzanotte
,
V.
Mulloni
,
P.
Russer
,
R.
Sorrentino
,
F.
Vitulli
, and
L.
Vietzorreck
,
Proceedings of the 36th Microwave Conference
, Manchester, UK, 10–15 September
2006
(unpublished), p.
1727
.
18.
E. P.
McErlean
,
J. -S.
Hong
,
S. G.
Tan
,
L.
Wang
,
Z.
Cui
,
R. B.
Greed
,
D. C.
Voyce
,
Microwaves, IEE Proceedings on Antennas and Propagation
,
2005
(unpublished), p.
449
.
19.
S.
Catoni
,
S.
Di Nardo
,
P.
Farinelli
,
F.
Giacomozzi
,
G.
Mannocchi
,
R.
Marcelli
,
B.
Margesin
,
P.
Mezzanotte
,
V.
Mulloni
,
D.
Pochesci
,
R.
Sorrentino
,
F.
Vitulli
, and
L.
Vietzorreck
,
Proceedings of the 2007 MEMSWAVE Workshop, Eighth International Symposium on RF MEMS and RF Microsystems
, Barcelona, Spain, 26–29 June
2007
, (unpublished).
20.
S.
Barker
and
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
46
,
1881
(
1998
).
21.
R.
Buttiglione
,
M.
Dispenza
,
A. M.
Fiorello
,
J.
Tuominen
,
K.
Kautio
,
J.
Ollila
,
T.
Jaakola
,
K.
Rönkä
,
S.
Catoni
,
D.
Pochesci
, and
R.
Marcelli
,
Proceedings of EMPC2007, European Microelectronics and Packaging Conference and Exhibition
, Oulu, Finland,
2007
(unpublished).
22.
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
G. -L.
Tan
, and
J. S.
Hayden
,
IEEE Microw. Mag.
3
,
72
(
2002
).
23.
G.
Bartolucci
,
S.
Catoni
,
F.
Giacomozzi
,
R.
Marcelli
,
B.
Margesin
, and
D.
Pochesci
,
Electron. Lett.
43
,
1290
(
2007
).
24.
L.
Zhou
, “
RF MEMS DC contact switches for reconfigurable antennas
,” M.S. thesis,
San Diego State University
,
2006
.
25.
W. P.
Kornrumpf
,
N. N.
Karabudak
, and
W. J.
Taft
,
Proceedings of the 22nd AIAA International Communications Satellite Systems Conference and Exhibit 2004
, Monterey, California, 9–12 May
2004
(unpublished), AIAA Pare No. 3106.
26.
C.
Goldsmith
,
J.
Ehmke
,
A.
Malczewski
,
B.
Pillans
,
S.
Eshelman
,
Z.
Yao
,
J.
Brank
, and
M.
Eberly
,
IEEE MTT-S Int. Microwave Symp. Dig.
2001
,
227
(
2001
).
27.
X.
Yuan
,
S. V.
Cherepko
,
J. C. M.
Hwang
,
C. L.
Goldsmith
, and
C.
Nordquist
,
IEEE MTT-S Int. Microwave Symp. Dig.
2004
,
1943
(
2004
).
28.
W.
Spengen
,
R.
Puers
,
R.
Mertens
, and
I.
De Wolf
,
J. Micromech. Microeng.
14
,
514
(
2004
).
29.
P.
Peng
,
C.
Palego
,
S.
Halder
,
J.
Hwang
,
C. V.
Jahnes
,
K. F.
Etzold
,
J. M.
Cotte
, and
J. H.
Magerlein
,
IEEE Trans. Device Mater. Reliab.
8
,
642
(
2008
).
30.
S. T.
Patton
and
J. S.
Zabinski
,
J. Appl. Phys.
99
,
94910
(
2006
).
31.
Z.
Peng
,
X.
Yuan
,
J. C. M.
Hwang
,
D. I.
Forehand
, and
C. L.
Goldsmith
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
55
,
2911
(
2007
).
32.
G.
Wang
, “
RF MEMS switches with novel materials and micromachining techniques for SOC/SOP RF front ends
,” M.S. thesis,
Georgia Institute of Technology
,
2006
.
33.
V. G.
Theonas
,
M.
Exarchos
,
G.
Konstantinidis
, and
G. J.
Papaioannou
,
J. Phys.: Conf. Ser.
10
,
313
(
2005
).
34.
E.
Papandreou
,
M.
Lamhamdi
,
C. M.
Skoulikidou
,
P.
Pons
,
G.
Papaioannou
, and
R.
Plana
,
Microelectron. Reliab.
47
,
1812
(
2007
).
35.
X.
Yuan
,
Z.
Peng
,
J. C. M.
Hwang
,
D.
Forehand
, and
C. L.
Goldsmith
,
IEEE Trans. Device Mater. Reliab.
6
,
556
(
2006
).
36.
S.
Catoni
,
S.
Di Nardo
,
P.
Farinelli
,
F.
Giacomozzi
,
G.
Mannocchi
,
R.
Marcelli
,
B.
Margesin
,
P.
Mezzanotte
,
V.
Mulloni
,
R.
Sorrentino
,
F.
Vitulli
, and
L.
Vietzorreck
,
Proceedings of the 2006 MEMSWAVE Workshop, Seventh International Symposium on RF MEMS and RF Microsystems
, Orvieto, Italy,
2006
(unpublished).
37.
S.
Melle
,
D.
De Conto
,
L.
Mazenq
,
D.
Dubuc
,
B.
Poussard
,
C.
Bordas
,
K.
Grenier
,
L.
Bary
,
O.
Vendier
,
J. L.
Muraro
,
J. L.
Cazaux
, and
R.
Plana
,
Microelectron. Reliab.
45
,
1770
(
2005
).
38.
J.
Vandershueren
and
J.
Casiot
, in
Topics in Applied Physics: Thermally stimulated relaxation in solids
, edited by
P.
Braunlich
(
Springer-Verlag
,
Berlin
,
1979
), Vol.
37
, Chap. 4, pp.
135
223
.
39.
G.
Papaioannou
,
J.
Papapolymerou
,
P.
Pons
, and
R.
Plana
,
Appl. Phys. Lett.
90
,
233507
(
2007
).
40.
G.
Papaioannou
,
F.
Giacomozzi
,
E.
Papandreou
, and
B.
Margesin
,
Proceedings of the 2007 MEMSWAVE Workshop, Eight International Symposium on RF MEMS and RF Microsystems
, Barcelona, Spain,
2007
(unpublished).
41.
P.
Czarnecki
,
X.
Rottenberg
,
P.
Soussan
,
P.
Ekkels
,
P.
Muller
,
P.
Nolmans
,
W.
De Raedt
,
H. A. C.
Tilmans
,
R.
Puers
,
L.
Marchan
, and
I.
De Wolf
,
Proceedings of the MEMS2008 Conference
,
2008
(unpublished).
42.
B.
Lakshminarayanan
,
D.
Mercier
, and
G. M.
Rebeiz
,
IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory Tech.
56
,
971
(
2008
).
43.
P.
Blondy
,
A.
Crunteanu
,
C.
Champeaux
,
A.
Catherinot
,
P.
Tristant
,
O.
Vendier
,
J. -L.
Cazaux
, and
L.
Marchand
,
IEEE MTT-S Int. Microwave Symp. Dig.
2
,
573
(
2004
).
44.
D.
Mardivirin
,
A.
Pothier
,
M.
El Khatib
,
A.
Crunteanu
,
O.
Vendier
, and
P.
Blondy
,
Proceedings of the Third European Microwave Integrated Circuits Conference
,
2008
(unpublished), p.
490
.
45.
A.
Ferrari
,
S.
Catoni
,
R.
Marcelli
, and
G.
Bartolucci
,
Series in Micro and Nanoengineering, Emerging Technologies for RF and Millimeter Wave Circuits
, edited by
R.
Sorrentino
,
A.
Müller
, and
D.
Dascalu
(
Editura Academiei Române
,
Bucureşti
,
2007
), Vol
10
, p.
241
.
46.
A.
Crunteanu
,
A.
Pothier
,
P.
Blondy
,
F.
Dumas-Bouchiat
,
C.
Champeaux
,
A.
Catherinot
,
P.
Tristant
,
O.
Vendier
,
C.
Drevon
,
J. L.
Cazaux
, and
L.
Marchand
,
Microelectron. Reliab.
46
,
1741
(
2006
).
47.
S. S.
McClure
,
L. D.
Edmonds
,
R.
Mihailovich
,
A. H.
Johnston
,
P.
Alonzo
,
J.
DeNatale
,
J.
Lehman
, and
C.
Yui
,
IEEE Trans. Nucl. Sci.
49
,
3197
(
2002
).
48.
D.
Marinaro
,
P.
McMahon
,
A.
Wilson
,
D.
Science
, and
T.
Organisation
, Technical Note No. DSTO-TN-0713 (
2006
).
49.
S. P.
Lau
,
J. M.
Shannon
, and
B. J.
Sealy
,
J. Non-Cryst. Solids
277–230
,
533
(
1998
).
You do not currently have access to this content.